S C E N T P R O F I L E
The Bergamot herb, a perennial, aromatic plant indigenous to North America, is now frequently found in gardens as ornamentals used to attract butterflies, bees and hummingbirds. Due to this, it is sometimes referred to as the ‘Bee Balm’ with bees eagerly seeking the blossoms that secrete their generous amount of nectar. The blossoms themselves are quite unique, blooming from early summer to early autumn, with bright and scarlet-coloured, tubular petals.
More than just a herb, however, Bergamot is also the name of a plant that produces the fragrant citrus fruit, The Bergamot Orange (Citrus Bergamia). Roughly around the size of an orange, this fruit also has the colouring not dissimilar to that of a lime. Whilst the fruit is far too sour to eat, The Bergamot Orange is often used in marmalade and baking, as well as having other medicinal and perfumery uses thanks to its oil.
The first roots of the Bergamot Tree can be traced to Southeast Asia and it achieved both its renown and name in the Italian town of Bergamo. Now commercially grown in southern Calabria in Southern Italy, as well as in Côte d’Ivoire, for its essential oil, this highly sought-after commodity is produced from zesting the fruit’s rind which blossoms in winter and is subsequently cold pressed.
The fragrance itself has overall sweet and citrusy tones but its unusually spicy note is what distinguishes it from other citrus scents. Apart from its frequent use in perfumes and skincare, first popularised by the aristocrats in Court of Louis XIV of France, Bergamot is also found in folk medicine, where it’s claimed to reduce high cholesterol and aid in symptoms of depression in aromatherapy.
Why are there two different plants both called Bergamot, however? The fragrance of the Bergamot herb is strongly reminiscent of the Bergamot Orange’s aroma, earning them both the same name.
At The Master Herbalist, our very own Neroli & Bergamot fragrance is available in both our Wardrobe Fresheners and Scented Drawer Liners in various contemporary designs - William Morris ‘Willow’, classic Heron, Japanese Pen and Geometric print.
Shop the collection here.